If she dumps you for her ex, you need to step back and play it cool, especially if you just started dating her. Focus on bettering yourself, while you go meet new women. She broke up with her ex-boyfriend before, and most likely will do it again if you give her enough time.
There’s the short of it, if you don’t want to read the entire article.
If that’s the case, you can take the week off. I’ll see you guys next Monday. For those of you that are still with me, we’re going to go through a great email I got last weekend.
Charlie has been a regular reader for the last 6 months. After meeting a girl he really liked, she left him for her ex-boyfriend. So far, nothing special there.
Charlie’s email is great because it gives us an inside look into the dynamics that cause women to run back to their ex-boyfriends.
You’ll also notice that in this case that women don’t use the same logic that men do. Pay close attention to that.
I just recently broke up with my girlfriend who I was dating for 9 weeks. Not that long I know, but I thought things were going great. She broke up with me because she still loves her ex-boyfriend I guess.
She originally broke up with him because he cheated on her, which makes me feel sick. Now she wants to try again with him which has made me feel terrible if I’m honest, like a big hit to the chest.
How can she go and trust a guy like that?
I loved the girl even after such a little stint together. She meant a lot to me and made me really happy… I did a lot for her (Sent a big bunch of flowers to her house out of nowhere for example) because it was just in my kind nature to be like that.
I’ll admit I’m not much of a strong person, kind of soft in a way, and that might have caused the downfall of us but I can’t change the way I am. This is the person I’ve always been and has gotten me places.
The main thing that I obviously get told is to move on and that’s plenty left out there for me but this girl really meant a lot to me and would obviously want another chance with her because I obviously felt like I was doing nothing wrong in the relationship and felt hard done by with the breakup. I can’t go chasing her because it’s not my place anymore to do so. I love her and miss her.
I’m not sure what actions to take in order to move on really because there’s not much I can do to change my routine because it’s pretty set in stone.
All in all, I want her back and basically, make her realize what she’s missed out on. She meant a lot to me. I read your article about the no-contact rule but that’s not really possible because we pretty much work in the same department.
It’s really hit me hard what has happened but if I get another chance with her then it’d be great.
Any advice for me?
There’s a lot to digest here. Before you read on, take a second and try to think about why Charlie’s ex-girlfriend left him.
Why She Left You For Her Ex-Boyfriend
Most of the time when a guy comes to me asking for help, the story he tells me revolves around these themes:
- The relationship is less than 1 year old.
- His ex-girlfriend broke up with her former boyfriend right before they got together.
- Normally he’s a pleaser, meaning he goes out of his way to make her happy way too soon.
- He is convinced she’s more attracted to him than she really is.
- She has a long history with her ex-boyfriend.
- Her former relationship almost always had issues.
- About 75% of the time she was the one who got dumped.
- The other 25% of the time she dumped him for something he did (cheating, lying, etc).
- When she broke up with her ex-boyfriend it wasn’t cold and calculated. It was emotional. See the 6 types of breakups here.
As you’ll see in a second, there’s a reason why almost all of these cases look alike.
If you have a special situation that I don’t mention, write to me about it here.
She Never Got Over Her Ex-Boyfriend
If your ex-girlfriend leaves you for her ex-boyfriend, she’s not over him yet. That should be very clear.
Hindsight is always 20:20, but there are early signs that this is the case if you know where to look. In Charlie’s case, the red flags were everywhere.
- Her last relationship ended because of cheating.
- Her last breakup was very likely emotional, not cold and calculated.
- They had a short relationship – so not enough time for her to become emotionally attached to him as I’ll talk about in a second.
- Charlie is a pleaser.
- Charlie also thought the relationship was going better than it really was.
Other red flags to look out for include:
- She got dumped. Studies show that the dumpee experiences more emotional trauma – which makes the prospect of her reconnecting with her ex more tempting. There can be ego at play here too along the lines of “who is he to dump me?”
- She still talks to him.
- She’s still angry/frusturated about something that went on in their relationship.
In Charlie’s situation, it seems that his ex-girlfriend used him as a rebound. Her last relationship ended because of infidelity which caused her to make a snap decision and dump him.
And it’s not like that snap decision took away all of the history they had, or the feelings they shared.
It takes time to truly get over someone, and it doesn’t seem like Charlie’s ex-girlfriend had that time.
Plus, Charlie’s pushover behavior and intense focus on her didn’t help either, as we’ll talk about in a second.
It Takes Time For Her To Fall In Love (But Not A Lot Of Time For Her To Leave You)
Charlie got way ahead of himself and projected his own feelings onto his girlfriend, which is a big no-no.
I just recently broke up with my girlfriend who I was dating for 9 weeks. Not that long I know, but I thought things were going great[…] I loved the girl even after such a little stint together.
I’ve talked about this before in my article on the 6 reasons why she really left you, but how you THINK your relationship is going can be VERY different than how she thinks it’s going.
Remember, women make long term partnership decisions based on a different set of guidelines than you do. They don’t just see a pretty face and immediately fall in love.
It also takes them longer to begin attaching themselves to you for more than just a short term fling.
There have been numerous studies into this, and one of my favorites is a study done by eHarmony that shows women take almost twice as long as men to start thinking about the “I love you” conversation:
When looking at actual relationships, however, men were more likely to profess their feelings first! 62% of participants reporting on past relationships and 70% reporting on current relationships stated that the man said “I love you” first. On average, men started thinking about professing their love about 3 months into the relationship whereas women in the study started thinking about it closer to 5 months into the relationship.eHarmony “Read This Before Saying ‘I Love You!'”
So right away we know that Charlie made the mistake of projecting his own feelings onto his ex-girlfriend.
Based on the time frame of 9 weeks we can assume her emotions were not all the way there.
That’s a mistake – because when you make assumptions, you miss out on vital context clues that will tell you when things are not going well.
If you are dating a woman who just broke up with her ex-boyfriend, she may have stronger feelings for him than she does for you. If she still loves her ex but doesn’t love you, it’s a lot easier for her to rationalize leaving.
In my experience, this is the most likely reason she dumped you for her ex-boyfriend. It takes longer to fall out of love than it does to start loving someone new.
In Charlie’s case, he most likely overpursued her instead of letting her come to him at her own pace.
Because ultimately, the length of time it takes a woman to fall in love with you is largely out of your hand, assuming you are doing everything right.
The length of time it takes for a woman to fall in love will vary depending on her past and her personality.
Women that have trust issues, for example, may take longer to open themselves up to you unless you do everything right from the beginning, which leads me into my next point.
You Weren’t Meeting Her Needs
What your girlfriend needs versus what you THINK she needs are very different.
Charlie made this mistake as well, as you can see below.
She meant a lot to me and made me really happy… I did a lot for her (Sent a big bunch of flowers to her house out of nowhere for example) because it was just in my kind nature to be like that[…]
All in all, I want her back and basically, make her realize what she’s missed out on [..]
Notice that Charlie is only talking about himself here, and makes no mention of what is ex-girlfriend thinks?
Yep. That’s a problem.
Right away he assumes that because he did a lot for her, that she’s almost obligated to stay with him. Further, he even goes on to say that she’s missing out on him.
But clearly she doesn’t feel the same way, considering she left him for her ex-boyfriend.
So here’s the truth guys: there are only 4 things she needs in the beginning of any relationship.
Fun, freedom, consistency, and romance.
Give her those things in a way SHE enjoys and you’ll be good to go. Don’t assume things either. Just because you find playing GTA 5 for 6 hours fun doesn’t mean she will. Pay attention to how she has fun, how she uses her freedom, and how she approaches romance.
Mirror her own approach.
Don’t overcomplicate things or come on too fast, too soon. It scares women away, especially those who are dismissive-avoidants (about 13% of women).
This is especially important considering that her ex-boyfriend knew how to meet her needs at one point. It’s not a stretch for her to assume that he can do so again.
You Don’t Compare Well Against Her Ex-Boyfriend
As Renee Engeln, Ph.D., professor of psychology has pointed out, men and women have an innate drive to see where they stand relative to others.
We all want to compare well to others. It’s natural to want the best. Your ex-girlfriend is no different
Men compare how different women look. Women also do this, but generally focus more on comparing how different men make them feel.
Chelsea Damon, in her article “Why you should never ever, ever compare your husband to another man” does a great job of framing how this can look in practice. I feel this accurately describes how some women compare men:
Have you ever been scrolling through Facebook or Insta only to notice how Jessica’s husband surprised her with a planned date night, but you can’t really remember the last time your husband planned… anything? Or maybe you just got done watching that classic romantic movie and you realize that your marriage is kind of totally lame compared to Lou Clark and Will Traynor’s passion. Or maybe it’s not like that at all. Maybe you’re left wondering, knowing, that your friends’ husbands couldn’t possibly speak to them the way yours does to you.Living The Sweet Wife
She’s speaking hypothetically here, but the way she did it neatly represents what women are interested in comparing. Pay attention to those bolded sections if you need a clue. See how there’s not a single mention of looks?
It’s not how you look, or how much money you have. While these things help you on the first couple of dates, if you want to give her evidence to stick around long term, it’s about how you make her feel.
She knows how he made her feel. She wants you to make her feel even better.
It also appears Charlie may have come out short here. It sounds like his ex-girlfriend wanted someone that was more assertive than he was
Studies have shown men that cheat tend to be more aggressive overall from higher testosterone. Charlie said himself that:
I’ll admit I’m not much of a strong person, kind of soft in a way, and that might have caused the downfall of us”
It’s hard to say for sure, but it looks like Charlie didn’t stack up to his ex-girlfriend’s vision.
Something to keep in mind guys, you need to be better than the last guy if you want her to stick with you. That might not seem fair, but that’s life.
It’s only as fair as you work for.
There Are Other Reason As Well
In my article about the 6 real reasons why women leave men, I talk about some of the other factors that may have caused her to leave you.
This article is more geared towards long term relationships, but you’ll find valuable takeaways no matter what.
I strongly suggest you take a look – this information can save you years of stress in the future.
Now That She Went Back To Her Ex, Will It Last?
Now for some good news – chances are, her it’s only a matter of time until she’s back on the dating market again.
On again, off again relationships have a poor success rate. I’ve seen studies that have put the success rate at anywhere between 6-21%.
The reason, as Dailey, 2015 explains is simple:
As compared to partners whose relationships do not break up and renew, on‐off partners report lower relational quality (e.g., lower satisfaction, more relational uncertainty, greater conflict, more aggression) as well as greater structural constraints (e.g., children, lower-income).
In other words – her relationship isn’t automatically going to improve just because she goes back. It takes honest self-assessment, work, and patience to rebuild an old relationship.
Ultimately, most people just are not willing or able to do this work, which is the problem.
In Charlie’s case, I’m sure it’s only a matter of time until his ex-girlfriend gets cheated on again. Will she leave him when it happens? Probably. She did it once before.
To make a relationship work where it failed previously is really fucking hard. It’s easy to convince for anyone to convince themselves that “things will be different this time”.
But it’s another thing entirely to make things different.
So if she leaves you for her ex-boyfriend, you can be reasonably confident that it’s only a matter of time until she’s single again.
Here’s What You Need To Do In The Mean Time
If you are like Charlie, your first step is confronting any limiting beliefs you have.
You can’t let yourself get into the same mindset as Charlie, otherwise, you are going to suffer. Take a look at all the limiting beliefs he’s suffering from and how I’ve debunked them.
- “Because it was just in my kind nature to be like that. “(No it’s not, that’s just what you were taught).
- “I can’t change the way I am.” (Yes you can. People do it every day).
- “This is the person I’ve always been and has gotten me places” (That includes here, and you don’t seem too happy about it).
- “I obviously felt like I was doing nothing wrong in the relationship and felt hard done by with the breakup.” (It’s not what you feel that matters. It’s what she feels).
- “I’m not sure what actions to take in order to move on really because there’s not much I can do to change my routine because it’s pretty set in stone” (You have the power to change if you want it badly enough. Victor Frankl did it in the middle of the Holocaust. If he can, you can).
- “But that’s not really possible because we pretty much work in the same department” (Sounds like it’s time for a new company and a pay raise).
Make a list of everything you believe about your ex-girlfriend and then try to debunk each belief. For example, if you suffer from oneitis, you might remind yourself that there are literally hundreds of millions of single women in the world.
There’s no way that you hit the odds and picked the single best woman out of all of them.
Once you’ve screwed your head on tight and you aren’t letting any bullshit occupy your head rent-free, the best thing you can do is to play it cool. Don’t panic.
As I’ve already said, the chances are good that she’ll end up breaking up with her ex-boyfriend if you are patient.
You can’t rush this process. It has to be her decision. Begging will not work! You can’t force her to love you.
What you can do, however, is make it very clear that she’s going to lose you by choosing her ex-boyfriend.
Once you’ve cut contact, you need to start working on your outcome independence. Read that article, the concepts within will help make you magnetic to women.
Once you’ve made a game plan for building your outcome independence, it’s time to ask yourself some tough questions.
Think about why she left. What did she tell you verbally? Write down any reasons she gave you.
Then, think about how she acted. Do her actions match up with what she told you?
Once you have a good idea of what went wrong, you need to figure out what your part was in her going away.
With very few exceptions, I garuntee you went astray somewhere. Maybe you were too needy. Or you tried to be too Alpha.
Figure out what went wrong and make a plan to change it. If you need help with that, join my coaching program.
Then, think about the things that attracted her to you. Were those consistent throughout your relationship? If she really liked the romance, did you keep romancing her throughout the time you were together or did you slack off once you thought she was sticking with you?
To be honest, I wouldn’t obsess over these details, but it is important to have an idea of where you went wrong.
If and when she does reach out to you, follow the steps I’ve written about here. It will give you a bulletproof formula for a first date she’ll love.
But that’s beside the point, because there is an important truth hiding behind all of this.
After She Leaves Her Ex, Will She Come Back?
Before I answer this question I want to ask you two questions.
Are you sure you really want her back? If I told you I had someone even better waiting for you, would you still want her back?
If you answered yes to both of these questions, do me a favor and read this.
In my opinion, if a woman breaks up with you, she should never be anything more than a starter. As I’ve already mentioned, on-again, off-again relationships tend to suck. But hey, it’s your life.
If you still are convinced you want her back, I’ve got some good news and some bad news.
The good news is that she might come back. The bad news is that would be a step back for a guy like you.
Here’s the truth: there are millions of beautiful women looking for a guy like you. These are women that will choose you first, and are willing to put in the effort for the right guy.
Your ex-girlfriend may have been great. But was your relationship really that great? Remember, she left you for the guy she was dating before.
What does that really say about your relationship?
You can try to get her back. Or you can never look back while you find someone better.
I’ve given you the information to do whichever you prefer.
Now, the choice is yours.